Thursday, March 30, 2006

Rebbe Nachman of Beslov

The whole world is a very narrow bridge; The main thing is to not be afraid...

---- Rebbe Nachman of Breslov


Rosh Chodesh Nissan marks the birthday of one of the most famous Chassidic masters: Nachman of Breslov. Rebbe Nachman was born in 5532 (1772 C.E) in Medzeboz, Ukraine. He was the great-grandson of the legendary Baal Shem Tov, founder of the Chassidic movement, and his uncles were the famous rebbes Rebbe Baruch of Medzeboz and Rebbe Ephraim of Sudlikov, both great Chassidic masters in their own right.

Despite being born into such an illustrious family, Rebbe Nachman stressed that anyone, regardless of their lineage, could reach the highest levels of Holiness.

The lyrics of the famous Carlebach song "Kol HaOlam Kulo" are taken directly from Rebbe Nachman's teachings, and are an excellent example of the emphasis the Rebbe placed on faith, hope, and the dispelling of depression and despair. He placed a special emphasis on Hisbodedut, the simple practice of talking to G-d in seclusion, in ones own language, as if one were talking to a beloved friend or relative.

To learn more about Rebbe Nachman's teachings or Breslov Chassidus, check out the Breslov Center or the blog of Rabbi Lazer Brody.

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